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Canadian startup, Play It Gaming, has this week raised US$700 000 in seed funding to give the company a boost in bringing social games to features phones targeting emerging markets. While Africa and most parts of the developing world have exceptional mobile penetration, most people rely on feature phones. And while mobile gaming is on the increase globally, most companies focus on developing games for smartphones. That’s the gap Play It Gaming wants to fill.
To try and make sure this initiative pans out successfully, Play It Gaming is working in partnership with biNu — a cloud-based app platform that aims to bring various smartphone features to feature phones.
The startup is planning on bringing a multitude of social gaming features such as the ability to place wagers on global sporting events to an existing base of 5-million users.
Mobile penetration in Africa is expected to grow to a massive 1.2-billion by 2017 and while smartphone usage is on the increase, most people use feature phones.
Play It Gaming President Cory Cleveland argues, “Right now, smartphone technology is getting all the major headlines but, the reality is, there are currently over 5-billion under-served feature phone users.”
By using the mobile technology of biNu and the content offering from Play It Gaming both companies hope to bring social gaming experiences to mobile consumers in emerging markets.
Cleveland further states, “The incredible biNu platform has enabled users of this lower-end mobile technology, predominantly within emerging markets, to access previously unattainable information and services and the desire for this content is enormous.”
Play It Gaming plans to use the capital raised to initiate an extensive user acquisition strategy. This is expected to come through extending partnerships with global affiliate networks and implementation of a large-scale marketing drive in their territories of initial focus within Latin America, Asia and Africa.